For haulers that tend to drive or deliver dump trucks, the chance of debris flying out of an opened container or truck and hitting other motorists or damaging windshields is a real, yet preventable, risk! While having exposed tops on your dump truck allows for easier loading and unloading of the material, you shouldn’t keep that top open during long travel or while on highways. Responsible dump truck haulers know that the best way to prevent your load from spilling out and damaging other vehicles is to invest in a dump truck tarping system from myteeproducts.com
Investing in a dump truck tarping system means knowing your truck and your loads! Know whether you’ll benefit more from an electric tarp system or a manual tarp system for your dump truck, and consider purchasing accessories that fit to your tailgate for easier and safer attachments, air valves, and indicators for the body of your dump truck which can, for example, notify when the body is raised before or after loading and unloading a load.
It’s important to remember that no two dump truck tarps are designed the same! Depending on the type of material you haul in your dump truck, you may benefit from purchasing a waterproof vinyl dump truck tarp compared to a mesh tarp! It all comes down to knowing your load and making sure you are investing in the right accessories to make your job easier without risking the safety of your fellow motorists!
5 Reasons to Use Dump Truck Tarps
It’s a common argument that tarping your dump truck is a matter of preference and only viable if you have the time to spare attaching a tarp before you hit the road. However, beyond the responsibility of protecting other drivers or vehicles that may be behind or around you on the road, there are laws that differ in each state regarding the legal requirements for dump truck drivers. Below are five reasons you should use a dump truck tarp system:
1. Different State Laws:
A big consideration you should have as a dump truck driver may be one you didn’t know to be aware of: each state has different laws and requirements for articulated haulers. Some states require all dump truck loads be tarped before you hit the road while others are more relaxed with the regulations or lack any at all!
Lacking a dump truck tarp system or any covering over your materials when you cross state lines could result in a hefty fine or ticket, and some states may even require your truck to be taken out of service until the load is secured to their specifications. In an industry where time is money, hours spent negotiating with law enforcement or securing a tarp instead of driving to your destination can result in a damaged reputation and financial loss. The easiest way to avoid this scenario is to invest or install in a dump truck tarp arm kit!
2. Accidental Unloading:
Though a rare occasion, it is possible for you to accidentally or prematurely hit the switch or button which dumps your truck bed or lifts the body of your vehicle into the dumping position. Regardless of where you are, all your contents will land on what is directly behind you, from covering and possibly damaging another vehicle to severely harming a person.
If you have a dump truck tarp kit installed to your truck, however, all or most of your materials will be caught by the tarp and prevent them from spilling out in the wrong spot at the wrong time!
3. Different Tarps for the Perfect Job:
Like with any tarping system, keep in mind that there are different types of dump truck tarps with their own benefits and unique designs or utilities! While each type brings its own benefits, one tarp may be more beneficial for a specific job than another.
Mesh Dump Truck Tarps: Mesh tarps are specifically designed for use on dump trucks and can fit most standard electric or manual dump truck tarp systems. They are designed with polyethylene fibers and thus are able to withstand recurring uses and rough jobs! Mesh material allows for air flow throughout the tarp, eliminating any wind resistance that could risk tearing or abrasions on your tarp! These Mesh Dump Truck Tarps are best for hauling rock, sand, debris, plants, and other loads that do not need protection from water or moisture and benefit or require airflow during transportation.
Waterproof Vinyl Dump Truck Tarps: Typically, these heavy-duty waterproof tarps are designed to provide complete protection from the elements and keep your loads dry no matter the weather you’re traveling through! Designed to fit your standard electric tarp systems for dump trucks and manual tarp systems, vinyl dump truck tarps are built with reinforced webbing along both sides of the tarp and have evenly spaced, rust-proof grommets for easy tie-down or attachment to a tarp roller bar!
Asphalt Dump Truck Tarps: Asphalt tarps are an example of a tarp designed for a specific purpose. Asphalt dump truck tarps are built to perform well and last long in high heat environments. Asphalt tarps are lighter and easier to work with compared to the heavy-duty waterproof vinyl tarps, and they will not stick to your asphalt or be burnt through! While these tarps are extremely water and wind resistant, these are not recommended if you are hauling material that MUST remain dry; the fabric for asphalt tarps have a narrow width which may allow moisture to seep through.
4. Covers Allow for New Load Types:
Dump trucks have a unique design that may be beneficial for the transportation of materials or cargo not normally considered for dump truck hauling. While material like rock, sand, and debris is most common on a quarry, water is also needed to rid softer materials and soil away; while it’s not often considered, dump trucks can help with the transportation of this water! Placing a dump truck tarp system over your water/liquid or non-solid material will allow you to confidently deliver the load for miles without spillage!
5. Preventing Roadway Accidents:
The most important task of any truck or cargo hauler is ensuring your loads are secure before hitting the road, because should your cargo come loose during transit you put the lives of other motorists at risk. For dump truck haulers, you may be required to carry large or heavy loads of rock or debris from one location to another, which may require you to travel on congested highways and very public roads. Should you hit a particularly hard bump or make a sudden turn or break, your load can jostle and jerk out from the top of your dump truck and onto the road! It’s not just a nightmare for you – any drivers behind you at the time may swerve or make hard, sudden breaks to avoid the debris, thus causing a traffic jam at best and a serious accident or death at worst!
Installing a dump truck tarping kit over your material, no matter how heavy the cargo or how bumpy the road condition, you can drive easily knowing your material will stay IN the truck bed and that you’re helping to prevent a roadway accident!
Essential Dump Truck Accessories
We mentioned briefly above that dump truck operators should consider purchasing essential equipment and accessories for their dump truck tarp systems! But with so many options out there, what dump truck tarp parts should you really invest in? Below are ten accessories all dump truckers should consider purchasing.
1. Wind Deflectors:
Dump truck tarps are designed to withstand harsh conditions, but years of surviving difficult weather conditions and wind damage can take their toll. Damages like abrasions and tearing can be avoided or delayed with the installation of a wind deflector. These accessories lessen the stress your tarps can experience while on the road, adding years of longevity to your tarps!
2. Dump Body Vibrators:
When dumping material out of your dump truck, you may find some of the contents sticking to the floors or sides of your truck. A dump truck vibrator uses thousands of pounds of force to loosen these excess materials!
3. Inspection Doors:
These doors provide small access opening in the tailgate of your truck so you can check on your materials during any tasks that don’t require you to lower your tailgate.
4. Air Valves:
Available in a variety of positions and sizes – including 4-Way, 2-Position and 3-Position valves – you can control any required air flow for precise operations in many air cylinder applications!
5. Dump Lower Hinge Assembly:
This unique accessory can be welded to your truck in order to secure the lower half of the tailgate when in a closed position, ensuring no accidental dumping or spillage will occur until this hinge is opened.
6. Dump Body-Up Indicators:
Sometimes it’s difficult to know when your truck body is entirely settled back onto your truck. This can be dangerous if you are preparing to haul more material to a new quarry, as leaving your body at a tilt may result in a mass amount of spillage or loose debris flying out the top. A dump body-up Indicator kit was designed to fix this very problem! It mounts to the frame of your vehicle and notifies you when the dump body is in a raised position.
7. Tie Rod Cylinder Kits:
These kits are ideal for dump truckers for engaging and disengaging any tailgate latches from the safety or comfort of the inside of the cab!
8. Banjo Eye:
This application can be welded to your dump truck tailgate or any other load securing applications. It acts as a latching point for chains, which can be very beneficial if you lack a chain latching point or need an additional one.
9. Tailgate Release Lever:
This dump truck accessory is used to build a manual link to open or close a dump body tailgate latch while you’re near the cab or front of the truck! You can also purchase a tailgate linkage connecting plate, which helps connect the tailgate release lever to the lower tailgate hinge!
10. Dump Truck Tarp Roller Kit:
This kit is especially useful for any dump trucker who wishes to use a tarp roller, which makes storage and application of a dump truck tarp much easier and quicker! This kit includes a folding crank with detent, the tarp roller, a 20 foot pull rope with tie-down hooks, and all mounting gear included!
The Benefits of Using Dump Truck Tarping Kits
For any dump truck hauler still hesitant about using a dump truck tarping system keep in mind the benefits you will both receive and contribute with the use of a dump truck tarp kit!
- Environmental Benefits: You do not know the type of material you may consider hauling down the road! Dump truckers have the ability to transport hazardous material, including local waste. For such hazardous material, you don’t want to risk anything spilling or leaking out onto roadways and potentially damaging the environment or ecosystems you’re traveling through. Dump truck tarps protect these materials and the environment!
- Roadway Benefits: Any motorists that are traveling behind you will be safer if your materials are covered by a dump truck tarp than they would be driving behind an uncovered truck. Carrying materials like stones down high-speed highways or bumpy road conditions can cause serious damage to vehicles behind you, like cracking windshields or spooking a driver and causing them to swerve off the road or into another vehicle, causing an accident.
- Protection from Penalties: Like we explained above, each state has their own laws regarding how or if a dump truck must cover its loads. Some regulations are fairly relaxed whereas others can result in hefty fines. For dump truck haulers that occasionally or frequently cross state lines when delivering their materials, it’s better to be safe than sorry and keep your dump trucks covered. It is an unrealistic expectation to have you memorize the law for each state you’re driving through, after all!
Hopefully this article has helped you understand the importance and benefits of using dump truck tarping systems! Investing in these dump truck tarps will help make you a faster and more efficient articulated hauler, as well as a responsible driver! You can haul safer and earn more money and opportunities with these dump truck tarp parts and accessories!